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concentrates on new and significantly improved products (goods and

services) and processes. It is recognised that purely organisational


innovation is widespread and may result in significant improvements in
firm performance.
1
However, since there has been relatively little
practical experience on this topic, it is currently dealt with in an annex
(Annex 2).

22. The main text deals with technologically new or improved
products and processes. The meaning of the label technological, as
applied to products and processes, and its precise scope in surveys and
studies, can be unclear. This is particularly true in an international
context. It is not always easy to distinguish between the special
meaning attributed here, the dictionary definitions of the word (or its
nearest equivalent in some languages) which may differ subtly between
countries, and the overtones of the word to which respondents may
react. For example, it was felt that in the service industries
technological might be understood as using high-tech plant and
equipment.


Diffusion of innovation
27. Diffusion is the way in which TPP innovations spread, through
market or non-market channels, from their first worldwide
implementation to different countries and regions and to different
industries/markets and firms. Without diffusion, a TPP innovation will
have no economic impact. In order to include some degree of diffusion,
as recommended in Chapter 2, the minimum entry to the system
described in this manual has been set at new to the firm. This
decision means that the complete diffusion of a new technology
through a firm after its first adoption/commercialisation is not included.

34. During a given period the innovation activities of a firm may be of
three kinds:
Successful in leading up to the implementation of a new or
technologically improved product or process.
Aborted before the implementation of a new or technologically
improved product or process, because the project runs into
difficulties, because the idea and know-how is sold or otherwise
traded to another firm, or because the market has changed.
Ongoing, activities which are in progress but have not yet reached
implementation.
INTRODUCTION
59. The knowledge-based economy is an expression coined to
describe trends in the most advanced economies towards greater
dependence on knowledge, information and high skill levels, and
an increasing need for ready access to all of these. A major
OECD study
2
has placed great stress on the importance of these
trends for policy:
Today, knowledge in all its forms plays a crucial role in
economic processes. Nations which develop and manage
effectively their knowledge assets perform better. Firms with
more knowledge systematically outperform those with less.
Individuals with more knowledge get better paid jobs. This
strategic role of knowledge underlies increasing investments in
research and development, education and training, and other
intangible investments, which have grown more rapidly than
physical investment in most countries and for most of the last
decades. The policy framework should thus put central emphasis
on the innovative and knowledge-creating and using capacity of
OECD economies. Technological change results from innovative
activities, including immaterial investments such as R&D, and
creates opportunities for further investment in productive
capacity. This is why, in the long term, it creates jobs and more
income. A main task for governments is to create conditions that
induce firms to engage in the investments and innovative
activities required for enhancing technical change.
60. Within the knowledge-based economy, innovation is seen to
play a central role, but until recently the complex processes of
innovation have been insufficiently understood. Better
understanding, however, has emerged from many studies in
recent years.
3
At the macro-level, there is a substantial body of
evidence that innovation is the dominant factor in national
economic growth and international patterns of trade. At the
micro-level within firms R&D is seen as enhancing a firms
capacity to absorb and make use of new knowledge of all kinds,
not just technological knowledge.
61. Other factors which influence firms abilities to learn are also
seen to be of fundamental importance. Ease of communication,
effective channels of information, skills transmission and the
accumulation of knowledge, within organisations and between
them, are highly important. In particular, management and an
appropriate strategic outlook are key factors. They determine
much of the scope for the external linkages and the positive
attitudes inside firms that promote receptivity to the adoption of
improved practices and improved technology. According to a
recent European Commission Green Paper:
4

The innovative firm thus has a number of characteristic features
which can be grouped into two major categories of skills:
strategic skills: long-term view; ability to identify and even
anticipate market trends; willingness and ability to collect,
process, and assimilate technological and economic information;
organisational skills: taste for and mastery of risk; internal co-
operation between the various operational departments, and
external co-operation with public research, consultancies,
customers and supplier; involvement of the whole of the firm in
the process of change, and investment in human resources.
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62. Better awareness of the significance of innovation has made it
a major item on the policy agenda in most developed countries.
Innovation policy grew primarily out of science and technology
policy, but it absorbed significant aspects of industry policy as
well. As the understanding of innovation improved, there were
substantial changes in the development of innovation-related
policies. Initially, technological progress was assumed to be
achieved through a simple linear process starting with basic
scientific research and progressing in a straightforward manner
through more applied levels of research, embodying the science
in technological applications, and marketing. Science was seen as
the driver, and all that government needed was science policy.
Fresh thinking about innovation has brought out the importance
of systems and led to a more integrated approach to the delivery
of innovation-related policies.

Innovation is at the heart of economic change. In Schumpeters words,
radical innovations shape big changes in the world, whereas
incremental innovations fill in the process of change continuously.
Schumpeter proposed a list of various types of innovations:
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introduction of a new product or a qualitative change in an existing
product;
process innovation new to an industry;
the opening of a new market;
development of new sources of supply for raw materials or other
inputs;
changes in industrial organisation.
In addition, the range of opportunities for innovation is
influenced by a fourth set of factors the surrounding
environment of institutions, legal arrangements, macroeconomic
settings, and other conditions that exist regardless of any
considerations of innovation.
Figure 1. The innovation policy terrain a map of issues
FRAMEWORK CONDITIONS
The general conditions and institutions which set the range of opportunities
for innovation
TRANSFER FACTORS
Human, social and cultural factors influencing information transmission to
firms and learning by them
INNOVATION DYNAMO
Dynamic factors shaping innovation in firms
SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING BASE
Science and technology institutions underpinning the
innovation dynamo

The outline map
10
in Figure 1 labels these four general domains of the
innovation policy terrain as follows:
the broader framework conditions of national institutional and
structural factors (e.g.legal, economic, financial, and educational)
setting the rules and range of opportunities for innovation;
the science and engineering base the accumulated knowledge and
the science and technology institutions that underpin business
innovation by providing technological training and scientific
knowledge, for example; transfer factors are those which
strongly influence the effectiveness of the linkages, flows of
information and skills, and absorption of learning which are
essential to business innovation these are factors or human
agents whose nature is significantly determined by the social and
cultural characteristics of the population; and
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the innovation dynamo is the domain most central to business
innovation it covers dynamic factors within or immediately external
to the firm and very directly impinging on its innovativeness.
Framework conditions
77. innovation activities at the firm level (the innovation dynamo),
comprises institutions and conditions which have mostly been
established (or have developed) for reasons unconnected to innovation.
These factors determine the broad parameters within which firms exist
and carry out their business. They therefore have substantial effects on
business innovation. This general institutional environment provides
the framework conditions within which innovation can occur.

3.1
The external arena within which firms can manoeuvre and change, and
which thus surrounds
78.




3.2
79. most countries, these reside and are further developed in public
sector science and technology institutions. The worldwide output of
scientific knowledge from these institutions provides an essential
understanding and theoretical base for business innovation.
80. The differences in the nature of activities within science and
technology institutions and innovating firms need to be understood.
There are significant motivational differences between the communities
within these two domains. Achievement is generally recognised in
different ways, and reward structures are also different. In science,
individuals tend to have a stronger role than the institutions which
employ them. On the other hand, the firm (and hence organisational
issues such as teamwork and strategy) tends to be more important than
the individual in business innovation and technology. However,
networks of individuals and thus many aspects of social behaviour
are of key importance in the transfer of information both among
scientists and among those involved in business innovation. The
national science and technology institutions can act as effective local
conduits to this base and can provide the skilled personnel to fill key
positions concerned with innovation. For much of business innovation
they also provide sources of specialist advice, fruitful interaction and
collaboration, and significant technological advances often having
their origin in their own scientific needs for improved instrumentation.
The component elements include:
the basic educational system for the general population, which
determines minimum educational standards in the workforce and the
domestic consumer market;
the communications infrastructure, including roads, telephones and
electronic communication; financial institutions determining, for
example, the ease of access to venture capital;
legislative and macro-economic settings such as patent law, taxation,
corporate governance rules and policies relating to interest and
exchange rates, tariffs and competition;
market accessibility, including possibilities for the establishment of
close relations with customers as well as matters such as size and ease
of access;
industry structure and the competitive environment, including the
existence of supplier firms in complementary industry sectors.
Science and engineering base
Scientific knowledge and engineering skills are a primary support for
business innovation. In
20
81.


3.3
82. crucial to the effective operation of innovation at the firm level.
These factors are mostly based around learning. They relate to the ease
of communication within organisations, informal interactions, co-
operation and channels of information and skills transmission between
and within organisations, and social and cultural factors which have a
pervasive influence on how effectively these activities and channels can
operate. A key point from research on innovation is that much essential
knowledge, particularly technological knowledge, is unwritten. Thus
some kinds of information can only be transferred effectively between
two experienced individuals through transmission to a receptive
individual who has enough expertise to understand it fully, or by
physical transfer of the people who are carriers of the knowledge. It is
learning by firms as a whole (i.e. diffusion of knowledge to a broad
range of key individuals within them) that is critical to firms
innovative capabilities.
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83.


Broadly, these transfer factors may be listed as:
formal and informal linkages between firms, including networks of
small firms, relationships between users and suppliers, relationships
between firms, regulatory agencies and research institutions, and
stimuli within clusters of competitors, can all produce information
flows conducive to innovation or lead firms to be more receptive to it;
the presence of expert technological gatekeepers or receptors
individuals who, through many means, keep abreast of new
developments (including new technology and codified knowledge in
patents, the specialised press and scientific journals), and maintain
personal networks which facilitate flows of information can be
crucial to innovation within a firm;
The elements of the national science and engineering base include:
The specialised technical training system. The university system.
The support system for basic research (radical breakthroughs and
long-term benefits aside, basic scientific research is sometimes
perceived as providing little direct benefit to business innovation.
However, its indirect benefits can be very substantial. Scientific
investigation often requires the development of highly sophisticated
and ultra-sensitive equipment. Thus, many areas of basic research
provide fertile ground for the training of skilled technology-oriented
scientists whose experience can often be successfully directed to
industrial problems.).
Public good R&D activities funding programmes and institutions
generally directed towards areas such as health, the environment and
defence.
Strategic R&D activities funding programmes and institutions
directed towards pre-competitive R&D or generic technologies.
Non-appropriable innovation support funding programmes and
institutions directed towards research in areas where it is difficult for
individual enterprises to appropriate sufficient benefit from their own
in-house research.
Transfer factors
Research on innovation has identified a number of human, social and
cultural factors which are
21
international links are a key component of the networks through
which information is channelled networks (invisible colleges)
of international experts are a key means of transmitting up-to-
date scientific understanding and leading-edge technological
developments;
the degree of mobility of expert technologists or scientists will affect
the speed at which new developments can spread;
the ease of industry access to public R&D capabilities;
spin-off company formation usually involving the transfer of
particular skilled individuals is often a valuable means of
achieving commercialisation of new developments arising out of
public sector research;
ethics, community value-systems, trust and openness that influence
the extent to which networks, linkages and other channels of
communication can be effective, by affecting the informal
dealings between individuals which underpin many business
arrangements, and setting the parameters and accepted rules of
behaviour within which communication and exchanges of
information occur; and
codified knowledge in patents, the specialised press and scientific
journals.
3.4 Innovation dynamo
84. The complex system of factors shaping innovation at the firm level
is referred to as the innovation dynamo. Placing the innovation
dynamo at the centre of the map recognises the importance of the firm
for an economy to be innovative. It is therefore important to understand
what characteristics make firms more or less innovative and how
innovation is generated within firms. The propensity of a firm to
innovate depends, of course, on the technological opportunities it faces.
In addition, firms differ in their ability to recognise and exploit
technological opportunities. In order to innovate, a firm must figure out
what these opportunities are, set up a relevant strategy, and have the
capabilities to transform these inputs into a real innovation and do so
faster than its competitors. But it would be misleading to stop there.
Many technological opportunities do not just arise on their own, but are
devised by firms in order to fulfil some strategic goal (e.g. satisfying an
identified market demand). Innovation capability consists of a set of
factors, which the firm either has or has not, and ways of combining
these factors efficiently.
85. The technological capability of a firm is partly embedded in its
labour force. Skilled employees are a key asset for an innovative firm.
Without skilled workers a firm cannot master new technologies, let
alone innovate. Apart from researchers, it needs engineers who can
manage manufacturing operations, salespeople able to understand the
technology they are selling (both to sell it and to bring back customers
suggestions), and general managers aware of technological issues.
86. Capability also depends on the characteristics of the firm: the
structure of its labour force and facilities (skills, departments), its
financial structure, its strategy on markets, competitors, alliances with
other firms or with universities, and above all its internal organisation.
Many of these aspects are complementary. A particular skill structure
will go hand in hand with a particular type of strategy, financial
structure and so on.
87. The options open to a firm which wants to innovate, i.e. to change
its technological assets, capabilities and production performance, are of
three kinds: strategic, R&D and non-R&D.
Strategic: As a necessary background to innovation activity, firms
have explicitly or not to make decisions about the types of markets
they serve, or seek to create, and the types of innovations they will
attempt there.
R&D: Some of the options relate to R&D (in the Frascati Manual
sense, including experimental development that goes well beyond basic
and applied research):
the firm can undertake basic research to extend its
knowledge of fundamental processes related to what it produces;
it can engage in strategic research (in the sense of
research with industrial relevance but no specific applications) to
broaden the range of applied projects that are open to it, and
applied research to produce specific inventions or modifications
of existing techniques;
it can develop product concepts to judge whether they
are feasible and viable, a stage which involves: i) prototype
design; ii) development and testing; and iii) further research to
modify designs or technical functions. Non-R&D: The firm
may engage in many other activities that do not have any
straightforward relation to R&D, and are not defined as R&D, yet
play a major role in corporate innovation and performance:



it can identify new product concepts and production technologies: i) via
its marketing side and relations with users; ii) via the identification of
opportunities for commercialisation resulting from its own or others
basic or strategic research; iii) via its design and engineering
capabilities; iv) by monitoring competitors; and v) by using consultants;
it can develop pilot and then full-scale production facilities;
it can buy technical information, paying fees or royalties for patented
inventions (which usually require research and engineering work to
adapt and modify), or buy know-how and skills through engineering
and design consultancy of various types;
human skills relevant to production can be developed (through internal
training) or purchased (by hiring); tacit and informal learning
learning-by-doing may also be involved;
it can invest in process equipment or intermediate inputs which embody
the innovative work of others; this may cover components, machines or
an entire plant;
it can reorganise management systems and the overall production
system and its methods, including new types of inventory management
and quality control, and continuous quality improvement.
Many attempts have been made to construct models to shed light on the
way innovation is
88. generated within firms, and how it is influenced by what goes on
outside firms. One useful approach is the chain-link model of Kline
and Rosenberg
12
(Figure 2).
Strategic: As a necessary background to innovation activity, firms
have explicitly or not to make decisions about the types of markets
they serve, or seek to create, and the types of innovations they will
attempt there.
R&D: Some of the options relate to R&D (in the Frascati Manual
sense, including experimental development that goes well beyond basic
and applied research):
the firm can undertake basic research to extend its
knowledge of fundamental processes related to what it produces;
it can engage in strategic research (in the sense of
research with industrial relevance but no specific applications) to
broaden the range of applied projects that are open to it, and
applied research to produce specific inventions or modifications
of existing techniques;
it can develop product concepts to judge whether they
are feasible and viable, a stage which involves: i) prototype
design; ii) development and testing; and iii) further research to
modify designs or technical functions. Non-R&D: The firm
may engage in many other activities that do not have any
straightforward relation to R&D, and are not defined as R&D, yet
play a major role in corporate innovation and performance:



it can identify new product concepts and production technologies: i) via
its marketing side and relations with users; ii) via the identification of
opportunities for commercialisation resulting from its own or others
basic or strategic research; iii) via its design and engineering
capabilities; iv) by monitoring competitors; and v) by using consultants;
it can develop pilot and then full-scale production facilities;
it can buy technical information, paying fees or royalties for patented
inventions (which usually require research and engineering work to
adapt and modify), or buy know-how and skills through engineering
and design consultancy of various types;
human skills relevant to production can be developed (through internal
training) or purchased (by hiring); tacit and informal learning
learning-by-doing may also be involved;
it can invest in process equipment or intermediate inputs which embody
the innovative work of others; this may cover components, machines or
an entire plant;
it can reorganise management systems and the overall production
system and its methods, including new types of inventory management
and quality control, and continuous quality improvement.
Many attempts have been made to construct models to shed light on the
way innovation is
88. generated within firms, and how it is influenced by what goes on
outside firms. One useful approach is the chain-link model of Kline
and Rosenberg
12
(Figure 2).
One objective of further survey work should be to clarify these inter-
industry flows. Focusing merely on firms internally produced
innovations gives a misleading picture of the economic impact of
innovation on technological change. Some distinction is required
between internal and external sources/destination of the results of
innovating activities.
101. A separate but related issue concerns the role of inter-firm co-
operation via shared R&D, licensing, joint ventures and so on. In many
industries, co-operative arrangements have become so widespread that
it is difficult to distinguish the individual processes of innovation, and
sometimes even to see where the firms boundaries are.
102. All this has obvious implications for policy, much of which is
aimed, explicitly or implicitly, at promoting R&D, and pays far less
attention to the other parts of the innovation process. In particular
invention capability is often given precedence over technology
adoption capability, yet the latter is a key component in a firms
performance.